Please select Into the mobile phone version | Continue to access the computer ver.
Purchasing a Cheap but worthy Practice Drone
12326 37 2015-6-26
Uploading and Loding Picture ...(0/1)
o(^-^)o
Cessna172
Second Officer
United States
Offline

Hi,
I was reading another thread where it was suggested that newbies could purchase an inexpensive "Practice" Drove to learn to fly before stepping up to the expense of a Phantom.

With the ultimate purchase of a Phantom in mind, is there an inexpensive drone that would be "BEST" for practicing flying the Phantom?   Maybe a Phantom 1 or 2 ?
Anything even less expensive just for getting the hang of things?  Or is there no substitute?

How about in the $100 or less range?  Anything worth even getting?  A disposable drone that still helps you get used to the fundamentals of 4 props and two joysticks.   (Obviously video would not be a priority)
2015-6-26
Use props
sveilien
lvl.2

United States
Offline

I bought a Husban X2 for $50 from Fry's. Its about 4 inchs square in size. Its difficult to control. I flew it every day for a month. At first i was crashing in to everything. But after a week, I was gaining control, able to do evasive moves and land it most the time. Then i just got better and better. Learning the dynamics of quad control and getting the muscle memory in your thumbs is priceless. By the time i got my P3P, flying it was ridiculously easy due to all the automation.
2015-6-26
Use props
Phantom Help
Captain
Flight distance : 183694 ft
  • >>>
United States
Offline

There are some inexpensive practice quadcopters here:
http://www.PhantomHelp.com/#PracticeQuadcoptersP3





www.PhantomHelp.com
Find the latest must-haves, fixes, mods, how-tos, guides, and accessories for your Phantom.
Phantoms in stock and ready to ship worldwide! (see availability)
2015-6-26
Use props
SULTAN This user has been deleted
Tip: the author has been banned or deleted automatically shield
2015-6-26
Use props
DaGunn
Second Officer
Flight distance : 203117 ft
United States
Offline

I purchased the Hubsan H107D with FPV, about $150.  I wanted to practice flying with FPV.  It has a narrow field of view, but it is built to take abuse.  Each batt provides about 5 minutes of flytime, but it moves quick and you have to react just as fast.  Buy plenty of spare prop sets, they are inexpensive, and extra batteries.  Knowing how to manually control the Hubsan will make flying the P3 a dream.  You have to know where the front of the bird is pointing to be able to control its movement properly, that is why I went for the more expensive FPV version.

I hope this helps.
Dave
2015-6-26
Use props
vu.q.le
Banned

United States
Offline

Tip: the author has been banned or deleted automatically shield
2015-6-26
Use props
RedHotPoker
Captain
Flight distance : 165105 ft
Canada
Offline

Buy an AR Drone 2.0. Has two onboard camera and visual positioning software. Whoops no Tx with sticks. So that's out. BeeBop deluxe.
How about a Blade mQX. They are quite Inexpensive, Fun to fly, nearly Indestructible for newbies.
And it won't get you in trouble, like a larger model may do, if you fly publicly.
If you desire something small, but with video recording capabilities, the Heli-Max 1SQ V-Cam model is priced right, to buy as well.
I hate to tell others what flying RC model to buy, as there are so many decent newer designed models available today.
Your friend is Google-YouTube, and 'Jeff Bazos' at Amazon....

Good hunting, & out of curiosity, would you please post up, which ever model/s you choose... Thanks

RedHotPoker
2015-6-26
Use props
jhall651
lvl.4

United States
Offline

I agree with the few that suggested the Syma x5. It even resembles the Phantom and has a traditional style transmitter for only $37 on Amazon.. Don't buy anything Parrot to practice as you are not flying a DJI drone with a mobile device. I myself have a Syma X5 and they are great fun. Plus you can get a 4 pack of batteries with a charger that charges all of them at the same time for like 12 bucks.
2015-6-26
Use props
JtrJr-UAV Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 4341 ft
United States
Offline

Cessna,

Reading all of the posts already posted, you've got all you need to make a decision on a practice drone. I'd have suggested the same as many others already have. IMHO, you are wise for researching, asking and deciding to get a practice drone first. Many will tell you it's not necessary because the Phantom is much easier to fly. The skill you will acquire in an emergency situation will be well worth it. Go for it and get to flying!

Jerry
2015-6-26
Use props
FantomDK
Second Officer

Denmark
Offline

What people suggest are good suggestions. I have flown radio controlled aircraft before flying quadcopters, but before getting my DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ I got a Hubsan X4 (with HD-camera). It worked well as a trainer.
Now I train with this one indoors

IMG_6512.jpg
IMG_6497.jpg


2015-6-26
Use props
RedHotPoker
Captain
Flight distance : 165105 ft
Canada
Offline

Another thought, Perhaps a SIM like Realaflight, may also be helpful.
All though the drones in it, appear very small on the  TV screen, so judgement can be hampered.
But the heli's are in large numbers, and you can actually learn to fly, without the cost of repairs and rebuilds. ;-)

Looking forward to a mostly hot & sunny day tomorrow., after the funeral, and other prior commitments.
As I will have a couple free hours to fly,  but with but one single flight battery... Grrrr
Ten minute here, ten minutes there. Going to be charging that battery a lot.


RedHotPoker



2015-6-26
Use props
vu.q.le
Banned

United States
Offline

Tip: the author has been banned or deleted automatically shield
2015-6-26
Use props
mech
lvl.3

United States
Offline

My first drone was a husban X4. I still have it to stay current since the phantoms mostly fly themselves.
2015-6-26
Use props
Cacc
lvl.4

Canada
Offline

I started with the Syma X5C-1 as well. Great little acrobatic craft that is pretty cheap. Extra batteries and props add another $20 or so to the price tag but are a must because 8 minutes flight is not enough and you WILL bend a few props. Now there is a model with FPV and all that good stuff for around the same price as well. I have flown model RC planes for years so was familiar with the controls, but it was still a great cheap craft to test what a quadcopter is capable of.
2015-6-26
Use props
JtrJr-UAV Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 4341 ft
United States
Offline

RedHotPoker Posted at 2015-6-27 10:07
Another thought, Perhaps a SIM like Realaflight, may also be helpful.
All though the drones in it,  ...

You go RedHot, fly what you can fly! If you need batteries, let me know and I'll find them for you. I've made a couple of connections over the past year. Just get out and fly!

Sometimes we forget that life ends. I had to do a count one day, just for my own resolution. I've been with thirty-seven people when they have passed. Is that "normal"? Count once, how many do you come up with? I've never met anyone but a serviceman that has ever said more than ten. Obviously, I'm not "normal". No biggie, I just want people to go for it! Get all you can from this world. Whether it's Phantoms, Solo's or any other UAV or hobby, get on with life, enjoy these perks we get to bitch about and take care of your Family and Friends. That's all I got, I'm getting tired.

Jerry
2015-6-26
Use props
Cessna172
Second Officer
United States
Offline

Decided to try this one

Syma X5C-1

At $55.00....not much to lose.   I see there's a way to double the range from 150m to about 300m by using a regular WiFi antenna.   I think 200m would be plenty for this.  Will probably do that.
2015-6-26
Use props
FantomDK
Second Officer

Denmark
Offline

vu.q.le@outlook Posted at 2015-6-27 11:01
OMG! That small thing is so cute!  ahhhh

I know, right? It is hilarious

I could not resist when I could get it in white like my P3Pro.
2015-6-26
Use props
Michael M
First Officer
Flight distance : 1984898 ft
Canada
Offline

I use a cheerson cx10 and a syma x5sw with wifi fpv under 70$. Pretty amazing and stable drone just blew me away for that price point.
2015-6-26
Use props
RedHotPoker
Captain
Flight distance : 165105 ft
Canada
Offline

JtrJr-UAV Pilot Posted at 2015-6-27 11:33
You go RedHot, fly what you can fly! If you need batteries, let me know and I'll find them for you ...

Hi bro,
Thanks. So true, living to die of dieing to live? ;-)
Yes, some days, I wonder that myself. After the funeral, I'm quite sure I will begin to feel much better, but been a little down all week. It probably shows through in my writing... Oh well, friends come and friends go, but I have lost so many, I am one of the last survivors, of my old group of buddies and comrades.

I have several small quad copters and a couple of heli's. Yeah, but I'm getting more fun from this Phantom, than a lot of them. But they also helped and taught me how to fly, so I can't really complain.

There are dozens of cheap quads on the market these days. Like dollar store junk, a lot of it. So it's wise to ask, experienced forum flyers for worthy suggestions.

Have fun, everyone!!

RedHotPoker
2015-6-26
Use props
Rude
lvl.1

Finland
Offline


I bought an AR Drone 2 in 2013. Used it a few tens of flights. It breaks easily and video and photos are crap. Anyway, the idea was good and I was following the development of these devices the next couple of years. Finally the  Inspire was released but I could not get it because sold out everywhere. Lucky me, the P3 was released in Aprilia, I ordered it immediately.
Prepairing to fly P3:
- Reading following books: Bying and flying the DJI Phantom, Getting started with hobby quadcopters and drones, Become an ace remote control drone pilot in 10 days, Drone photography tips and techniques, Quadcopter and drone photography
- Reading P3 manuals, watching training videos, reading forums

And
Practice with BLADE NANO QX. You can practice inside your house. Cannot break the copter, cannot break anything in the house because it is so light and made of very flexible plastic. Practice about one week several batteries every day. Steady hovering and controlled manouvering possible already.

P3 updated and calibrated waiting, flying first flight pretty soon


2015-6-27
Use props
GeneralToner
Second Officer

United States
Offline

I used the Syma X1.  This little guy flies indoors and out, nearly indestructable while learning and only $32 bucks on amazon.

Robosapien approved.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ge ... 606/in/photostream/

Robosapien w Quad.jpg

2015-6-27
Use props
cameramanpeter
lvl.1

Canada
Offline

I bought the Dromida Ominus.
It is awesome bang for your buck.
It says it is virtually indestructible ....
I found this to be true. I slipped up and it landed in the sea.
I fished it out.. Red light still on.
Washed it in fresh water and put it in a tub of rice for a day and ... Bingo ! Back to life.
I love this thing
2015-6-27
Use props
Cessna172
Second Officer
United States
Offline

cameramanpeter@ Posted at 2015-6-27 22:48
I bought the Dromida Ominus.
It is awesome bang for your buck.
It says it is virtually indestructibl ...

The Dromida Ominus looks pretty good.
But since the X5C-1 comes with a camera I thought what the heck.  My main desire for a Phantom is vido and photography at altitude so the X5c-1 will give me a "taste" of that....albeit nowher enear the Phantom capabilities of course.   Actually the video from the X5C-1 is not horrible and from watching videos, not bat at all for the price.
2015-6-27
Use props
JtrJr-UAV Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 4341 ft
United States
Offline

RedHotPoker Posted at 2015-6-27 15:38
Hi bro,
Thanks. So true, living to die of dieing to live? ;-)
Yes, some days, I wonder that mysel ...

I hear you, Man.

Jerry
2015-6-27
Use props
JtrJr-UAV Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 4341 ft
United States
Offline

GeneralToner Posted at 2015-6-27 22:12
I used the Syma X1.  This little guy flies indoors and out, nearly indestructable while learning and ...

General,

Somebody is living large! What are you a politician?

Very glad to see the tag on the bottom of your photo. I had to enlarge it to read it. Sounds like the Wife is okay! So very nice to see the tag. My prayers are with you and your Family.

Jerry
2015-6-27
Use props
GeneralToner
Second Officer

United States
Offline

JtrJr-UAV Pilot, I've just been lucky in life by working hard and marrying someone like minded.

Thank you for the prayers, my wife was born with cystic fibrosis and had a double lung transplant 11 years ago this August (all is going well there).  

GT
2015-6-27
Use props
FantomDK
Second Officer

Denmark
Offline

GeneralToner Posted at 2015-6-27 23:32
JtrJr-UAV Pilot, I've just been lucky in life by working hard and marrying someone like minded.

Tha ...

More power to you!
2015-6-27
Use props
JtrJr-UAV Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 4341 ft
United States
Offline

GeneralToner Posted at 2015-6-27 23:32
JtrJr-UAV Pilot, I've just been lucky in life by working hard and marrying someone like minded.

Tha ...

Same here GT, same here! I finally bit the bullet and gave up the career. Too much legal and political BS anymore. I'm a little too outspoken to mesh well with business community. Work hard, play hard, live hard and die hard doesn't seem to be the "in" thing anymore. Glad to hear about the Wife's recovery. Can't get much tougher than that. Appreciation for life is probably an understatement in your household.

Jerry
2015-6-27
Use props
swiss656
lvl.1

Switzerland
Offline

Hi
     After starting with helicopters, which was a wicked to start. I found the galaxy visitor 3 to be a good learning platform. It has good beginners modes and is resolvable to fly, and it behaves far better than a copter for a good starting pilot.
2015-7-13
Use props
shango
lvl.2
United Kingdom
Offline

If you are going to buy a phantom down the line anyway i'd just buy it now, don't waste the money on a practice unit, they are so easy to fly, my phantom is my 1st drone, just make sure your 1st flights are in a wide open space like a field.
2015-7-14
Use props
dlongcamp
Second Officer
Flight distance : 755988 ft
  • >>>
United States
Offline

I would recommend the Blade 180qx.   Its a fun quad to fly and I find myself still pulling it out quite a bit and flying it even though I have a Phantom 3 pro.   Once you get comfortable flying the Blade the phantom is a breeze.  
2015-7-14
Use props
Snowman
lvl.2

Finland
Offline

I got myself a Hubsan X4. I've crashed it probably something like 500 times. I've broken props and prop guards but the thing itself still flies beautifully. Same stick controls as P3. When you can fly X4, the P3 will be easy.

It is good to have lots of batteries. I ordered 10 batteries, a 5 batt charger and a dozen props from ebay for 20 bucks.
2015-7-15
Use props
fansd77b4cd0
lvl.3
United Kingdom
Offline

Hi, the first drone that I bought was the Phantom 3 Standard. Having studied film production i was looking for a drone that would allow me to get some fantastic aerial shots (and the P3 Standard deffo does that). I then fell in love with not only filming with the drone, but flying it in general. It is a good idea to practice first, but honestly the Phantoms are so easy to fly, that you can pick it up pretty quickly (especially with beginner mode). This link may be of some use to you, I would recommend the the Parrot AR 2.0, it walks the line between toy grade and enthusiast level drones. Hope this is of some help to you http://www.droneriot.com/bestdronesunder200/
2017-3-6
Use props
tahiryaqub
lvl.1
Flight distance : 91936 ft

Australia
Offline

I was looking on a Keyword Research tool searching for the drones having most searches on the internet and then what I found was that the Hubsan H501S X4 is having nearly 6600 searches a month. It seems this drone is really one of the most popular drones on the planet. It is not a very cheap drone but it is nicely priced drone. You can get one in around 280 Australian Dollars. The drone has nice features particularly for beginners. It has return to home and headless modes which are useful for beginners. So a wonderful camera drone, highly recommended.
2017-12-20
Use props
M.C. Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 9159734 ft
  • >>>
United States
Offline

1000% highly recommend the SYMA X8 . It helped me tremendously to hone in my skills in mode 2 which is what I used on both my DJI copters.

Believe me you won't regret practicing with this copter.  You'll also be flying basically in atti-mode because the SYMA copter goes all over the place which is better for you to practice being able to control the copter with the RC sticks. Be sure to practice in a wide open space.

Practice for a couple of months almost everyday to become a skilled-pilot. Glad I did because I'm quite a skilled piloting these DJI drones.  
Practice makes perfect !
2017-12-20
Use props
Jonwalter
lvl.1

United States
Offline

For a cheap beginner mini quadcopter, you cannot get much better than this H107C by Hubsan. It provides 9-minutes of flight time and 30-minutes of charging time. The package comes with a user manual, one quadcopter, USB cable, a remote control and four spare props. With this quadcopter, you can gain some experience with aerial photography or even use it to improve your flying skills. Although its recording quality is not the best out there, this quadcopter is still great for a small price tag.
2018-4-25
Use props
Jonwalter
lvl.1

United States
Offline

edit:
Finding a mini quadcopter can be a bit challenging with so many models available in the market. Thankfully there are still some models like Hubsan X4 H107L for example that manage to stand out from the crowd all thanks to its small size, great price tag, design and excellent quality. It features four channel 2.4 GHz controller and has a battery of 240mAH to give you pretty good flight experience. The camera performance is also good and will give you good quality video and images too.
2018-4-25
Use props
Mark The Droner
Captain
Flight distance : 2917 ft
United States
Offline

This is an old thread, but I've always argued that it wouldn't hurt to get a full sized cheap drone without GPS to practice with.  I'd get one with blade guards.  Forget about the FPV.  It likely won't last a month, but by the time it's done, you will be an expert ATTI pilot whether you want to be or not.  

https://www.amazon.com/Syma-2-4G ... keywords=syma+drone
2018-4-25
Use props
Advanced
You need to log in before you can reply Login | Register now

Credit Rules